The list author says: "Music plays an important role in the ALL SHALL BE WELL; AND ALL SHALL BE WELL; AND ALL MANNER OF THINGS SHALL BE WELL: from medieval chant to free-jazz noise skronk. It also played a big role in the writing of the novel. Truth is, I can't read or write or do much of anything without music playing in the background. Or foreground. So, here's a brief look at some music that features in the novel, inspired the novel, or just happened to be playing while I was writing."
"Gory, bloodthirsty chant ... Nah. Actually, here's not a bad place to start an unhealthy Hildegard obsession if the idea of a screaming Latin Lucifer puts you off. Intense, almost hysterically calm music."
"This CD is by the KRONOS QUARTET, not Jack Body. It's got pieces by John Cage, Guillaume de Machaut, Moondog, Hildegard von Bingen, Perotin, Harry Partch ... it's a new, better past. A reenaction of the highest order."
"And can't Arvo himself be pegged as something of a medieval re-enactor? One of my favorite beards in contemporary classical music. This recording post-dates the completion of the novel, but I'm sure Burt would approve. Put it on the headphones: chant like cold water pouring into your ears. In a good way!"
"Get past the jawdropping guitar-as-a-wind-tunnel-or-black-hole section, and Mr. Haino gives us some gloriously disembodied, almost medieval-style vocals. Otherworldy in the same way as Hildegard von Bingen or very-late-period Coltrane or Aphex Twin's Selected Ambient Works Vol 2. This is one of the greatest single noises I've ever heard. Good for writing."
""Ecstatic dancing (...) offers an example of medieval music therapy. Priestly dancing as an element of the divine service has now completely disappeared from the Christian rite" ... and a damn shame too! Can't get enough of this lately."
"The singular, incredible music of Richard Youngs also accompanied a lot of the writing of the novel. I think we even had this one playing during the birth of my son. Apparently did nothing for the pain."
"Part III of the novel takes place in the Czech Republic, a country I lived in - or a state of mind I was stranded in? - for the better and worse parts of five years. Beer, bad food, sour faces and ... Iva Bittova. One of the world's great talents. This double CD is her masterpiece. Worth any price you have to pay."